Saturday, May 25, 2019

Discover How This Special Dad And His Son On The Autism Spectrum Created Super Heroes To Learn By

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Led Bradshaw And His Son Jacob Create Super Hero Series To Help Educate Special Needs Kids 

Led Bradshaw and his son Jacob Co-creators of the Jet Jetpulse Comic Superhero Learning Series. Interview by Kamau Austin with Led Bradshaw.

Led Bradshaw is a quintessential father and then some.  His love for his son on the autism spectrum Jacob, and his commitment to help him succeed is also complimented by his concern for helping other children with similar challenges.

Bradshaw discovered a way to use his talent for art and drawing to connect on a profound level to help his son to learn using his love of superheroes.  I was able to get Led to take time from his busy parenting and professional schedule to answer some questions on the innovative and inspirational development of the Jake Jetpulse comic superhero educational series.

Interview with Led Bradshaw 

Kamau: Can you tell us a little about your background and your son's life growing up?

Led Bradshaw: I'm a Brooklyn born comic book artist/writer, graphic artist and Level 1 Teaching Assistant. Art is my life and it presents me with a ton of challenges yet none are more challenging or exciting than being a single father to an amazing 7 year old boy named Jacob.

Ever since I was I a kid, all I ever wanted was to draw comic books or saturday morning cartoons. It was always in my dreams. That's all I ever wanted.

Autism became a part of my life when Jake was diagnosed at the age of four. I created Jetpulse comics by embracing his special interests and pull him into learning.

Jake created the story for Jake Jetpulse through illustrations that he drew and hung on the refrigerator. After school, we'd sit and draw together for 30 minutes everyday.

Kamau: What inspired you to go into developing your comic book series with your son?

Led Bradshaw: before Jake was diagosed with autism, His mother and I noticed that he was having difficulties paying attention and learning in class. He was very self-directed and spent a great deal of time focusing on superheroes. Understanding this subject as his special interest, I incorporated 25 minute art activities into his daily routine.

At first, we focused on understanding emotions with colors. Then using those colors to communicate our mood in pictures. After several weeks of this, Jake started drawing himself as a caped superhero named "Ultra-Jake".

I encouraged him to draw more pictures of Jake and his superhero adventure. We worked together to flesh out the world that his character lives in, his strengths, weaknesses, as well as his allies and villains.

The "Ultra-Jake" character became such a big part of him; So much, that he'd dress up like his character to play. That's when I got the idea to draw the character myself and include his daily homework into the adventure.

Kamau: What is the name of your comic series and some of the leading characters?

Led Bradshaw: The name of our comic book series is "The New Adventures of Jake Jetpulse" with Jake as the main hero. he's joined by his best friends, Julia Santiago and Marrz the Troll. The characters were created to represent the three characteristics of autism.

Julia Santiago is the brains of the team. Her incredible intellect and knowledge of everything technical makes her an incredibly valuable member of the team. She's more into building fighting robots than hanging out at the mall with her friends.

Marrz is a member of a race of beings who dwell in the "Under-Boroughs" of New York City. they're a noble race of trolls who live to protect an ancient suit of armor that, if in the wrong hands, could spell doom for everyone on the planet. While lost and hungry on the surface, Marrz gets in trouble by stealing Julia's lunchbox. Jake helps Marrz return the stolen lunchbox and Julia forgives him for taking it and offers to help the giant troll. This is how they become friends.

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Kamau: What is the uniqueness of your comic book series in contrast to other comic books?

Led Bradshaw: It feels like a comic book. But each comic is more than that. It's actually a workbook that kids can use to sharpen their skills. They can learn new words and challenge themselves with quizzes and fun activities. the Jake Jetpulse comics are fun and light-hearted because it's educational.

Another thnig that makes Jake Jetpulse so unique is that it was created entirely from the minf of a young boy with autism. readers will have the opportunity to see the world and know what it's like to live life on the autism spectrum.

Kamau: Can you tell us about some of the challenges you've had helping to raise your son and how you and his mom are able to overcome them?

Led Bradshaw: Well, Jake's mother and I are divorced since 2014. He's almost 9 and he has a lot of questions as to why Mommy and Daddy are not living together. this brings a ton of confusion to him as he tries so desperately to understand.

Although he excels academically, Jake faces challenges with social interaction. For the last year or so, Jake experiences moments of fright or anxiety when he's left in a room alone. He doesn't enhoy going to the restroom without an escort, and misunderstands other's personal space. I'm happy to say that his mother and I work closely with his [Jake's] occupational therapists to learn new techniques to help Jake overcome his current challenges.

Kamau: What is the best way to support you and your sons efforts and how to contact you?

Led Bradshaw: The Jake Jetpulse series was created with the intetion to pull children on the autism spectrum into learning. I love to read the suggestions and comments from other parents. I feel this is a great way to help the website grow.

Another way? Buy one of our activity books and share them LOL . Many parents have been sharing them with teachers and other educators. The feedback is incredibly positive. I would love to see Jetpulse Comics become a hub for fun and learning where children can find new and exciting fun activities as well as practice their math and reading. Go to your local bookstores and ask for copies.I'm also having fun speaking to kids at their schools and reading to them. Hosting an art lesson is a ton of fun.

If you'd like to contact me, head over to the "Contact Us" section located on our website

Kamau: Can you tell us about some of your goals and plans for the future of your comic book series?

Led Bradshaw: I just released a Beginner's Reading Comic which is available now on I'm also working on a time-travel comic adventure series that will act as history lessons. Kids will be introduced to history's greatest figures in a very fun and unique way.

In the summer, Jake and I will start recording the Jake Jetpulse radio show. Think of it as the "Flash Gordon" adventure serials from the golden-era of radio. We're really looking forward to that.

And now that the weather's getting better, Jake and I will resume filming content for our Youtube channel.

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Posted by community events coordinator, Nzinga Lonstein Austin, is a prolific blogger who writes on the entertainment industry and issues for people with developmental and physical challenges.

She is presently in high school looking to have a career in video, film, and media. You can see more of her entertainment writing on Lonstein Movies.

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